Creamy Pasta with Roasted Zucchini, Almonds, and Basil


Joel likes to "kick me out of the kitchen" when I start to cook things that contain too much butter, cheese, or other unhealthy stuff.  Rightfully so, since we are trying to eat healthier.  However, tonight, he chose this creamy pasta dish that he found on from the NY Times.  So much for healthy!  But it was so delicious!

2 Zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 1/2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3/4 teaspoon Salt
Pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons Slivered Almonds
1/3 cup Heavy Cream
1 Basil Sprig, with leaves and stem
3 tablespoons Goat Cheese
1/2 teaspoon Lemon Zest, finely grated
6 ounces Spaghetti or Linguine

Toss the zucchini and oil with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste.  Arrange the zucchini on a baking sheet in a single layer.  Roast at 500 degrees, tossing occasionally, until golden and tender, about 20-30 minutes.  Meanwhile, toast the almonds in a skillet over medium heat until golden, about 3-4 minutes.  Transfer to a small bowl.  Simmer the cream and basil sprig in a small saucepan over medium heat until reduced to 1/4 cup, about 7 minutes.  Whisk in the goat cheese until the sauce is smooth.  Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon zest and 1/4 teaspoon of salt.  Cover and keep warm.  Cook the pasta according to package directions and drain well.  Toss the pasta with the cream sauce.  Serve topped with the zucchini and almonds.